Michael O’Boyle, Senior Manager/Codes, Standards & Laboratories at Philips-Lightolier, stated that “Lighting infrastructure will become a ubiquitous sensor network” that will encompass far more than just lighting as we know it today.
“Connected lighting systems are increasingly incorporating non-lighting functions to deliver new, innovative value propositions through systematic energy savings, safety, and security [functions],” he explained. In addition to motion sensing and power monitoring/maintenance, O’Boyle suggested that functions such as “incident detection, crowd management, and environmental monitoring” could become part of the connected equation.
“A new system-oriented perspective is needed in future lighting system characterization and regulation,” he proposed. Already there has been development in bio-adaptive lighting (i.e. coordinating with circadian rhythms) as well as implementing lighting as indoor navigation and location-based advertising.
“Why pick lighting [for all this]? Well, you have power and it’s everywhere,” O’Boyle noted, adding there are parts of a connected network that will have nothing to do with lighting, but will be contained within the system. “We must recognize the separation between lighting function and the other applications embedded within the lighting infrastructure,” he said. “But how do you know how much power is being consumed by the non-lighting secondary application?”